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LIFE Programme

The LIFE Programme is the EU’s funding instrument for the environment and climate action. Since its creation in 1992 LIFE has co-financed over 3 950 pilot or demonstration projects, contributing more than €3.1 billion to environmental protection in Europe.


LIFE 2014-2020: three times more funding for climate action

For the 2014-2020 period there is a new LIFE Programme for Environment and Climate Action with a 43% higher budget of €3.46 billion which includes a new €864 million sub-programme for climate action - LIFE Climate Action. This amounts to a tripling of the climate action budget compared to the 'LIFE+' programme in 2007-2013.

Under the 2014-2020 EU budget, support for climate activities through all major EU funding programmes – including agriculture, regional development, and the Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme – is being increased to at least 20% of overall spending. LIFE Climate Action will be complementary to this 'mainstreaming' of climate action into the EU budget, and will add value by addressing the specific needs of climate projects.

Supporting a low-carbon, climate-resilient economy

LIFE Climate Action will contribute to the shift towards a resource-efficient, low-carbon and climate-resilient economy. It has three priorities: mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions, adaptation to climate change, and governance and information.

LIFE Climate Action will support public authorities, NGOs and private actors, especially small and medium enterprises, in implementing small-scale low carbon and adaptation technologies and new approaches and methodologies.

A new type of project – Integrated Projects - will be introduced to support mainstreaming of climate action across sectors at regional level. Specific local and regional climate change mitigation or adaptation strategies or action plans could be financed through these new projects.

LIFE Climate Action will also have the opportunity to fund more projects by leveraging private finance through loans and guarantees via local banks. Moreover, the climate action sub-programme will also support capacity-building, as well as awareness-raising actions involving stakeholders to help improve implementation of climate legislation.

Further details will be available once the multi-annual work programme has been adopted. This is foreseen in early 2014.